A very thinky, solid look at how our constant, real time news atmosphere kills the perception of innovation. I have to agree, the stuff that’s happening right now is pretty amazing and I struggle to keep up. However, the ‘if it bleeds it leads’ atmosphere of hourly news that most people are engaged in leads to a dystopic and negative view of a world that actually contains a fair number of marvels going on.
“Even though its confluences can cause rapid shifts in technology, innovation is made of many long series of evolutions — not revolutions.
Take the good ol’ microprocessor. You’d be hard pressed to find a technological developments in the last century that’s more important. Critics of today’s progress love to point at it and say, ‘Why don’t we have moments like that anymore?’ Yet it took decades, a century even, of research to finally put the workable technology in practice.
But what did the public see? They saw companies like Fairchild Semiconductor put it all together and come out of nowhere to dominate the industry (for a while).
Yet the Internet affords us the opportunity to see the evolution of technology in all of its little increments. Each new research paper, previously confined to expensive journals, is now digested and simplified in blogs and cutting edge news sites, providing a constant flavor of the future. Every new direction or investment — self-driving cars! — for a tech company does the same.
Back in ‘the day’ there weren’t bloggers tracking Fairchild or other huge tech companies’ every move. There weren’t Twitter debates about whether the economics of a semiconductor could work. The general population didn’t have media outlets that echoed boardroom disagreements — and how it might affect their promise of one day releasing this ‘semiconductor.’”